Ignoring what we have learned from dozens of zombie and disaster movies, the US Department of Defense (DoD) has admitted that 22 military personnel may have been exposed to the anthrax virus after live samples were “accidentally” shipped to an American base in South Korea.
Apart from South Korea, live samples were also accidentally shipped to eight – yes – EIGHT – separate facilities across the continental United States, including laboratories in California, Texas and New York. A spokesperson is quoted as saying that there is “no risk to the public” and that nobody has shown signs of exposure to the deadly bacteria, although that’s not definitive, since Anthrax can remain dormant after infection for up to two months.
The bacteria were supposed to have been killed through exposure to radiation and then shipped off to “a mix of both commercial and government labs” as part of a “training exercise”.
The incident was reported to the Centre for Disease Control (CDC) who are naturally experts in the subject of dealing with accidental exposure to anthrax, after a 2014 incident where they also accidentally dispatched live anthrax samples between laboratories, resulting in “several” people being treated against exposure.
A spokesperson for the DoD is quoted as saying: “Out of an abundance of caution, the DoD has stopped the shipment of this material from its labs pending completion of the investigation,”.
Abundance of caution? This is why we can’t have nice things.